For Immediate Release
Contact: Stephanie Fontenot
Title: Director of Communications and Marketing
Phone: (409) 766-5146
GISD to Host Galveston Beach Run Sept. 9 including Visiting Pennsylvania Team
GALVESTON, TEXAS – Sept. 1, 2022 – More than 60 cross country teams will compete against Galveston ISD’s Ball High School during the annual Galveston Island Beach Run that will occur from 8 to 1 p.m. on Friday, Sept. 9, on Galveston’s East Beach.
The run, a one-day event, will include three different divisions of competition for both boys’ and girls’ teams.
A unique addition to this year’s competition is a visiting team from Mifflin County School District from Lewistown, Pennsylvania, that accepted an invitation to the meet and as a result, will be traveling out of state for the first time for competition purposes.
“Cross country is really big in Pennsylvania,” GISD Superintendent Dr. Jerry Gibson said. “The courses they run there are on the opposite end of the spectrum of what their runners will see here. In Pennsylvania, they run a lot of courses that have multiple hills and at our meet, they will run on sand. It will also be interesting seeing how they react to the humidity we have in Galveston.”
Four coaches and 18 runners comprise the visiting Pennsylvania team, who will stay a total of three nights on the island.
“It’s a significant opportunity for our runners to be able to come down,” Mifflin County Head Girls Cross Country Coach Neil Breneman said. “Some of our students have never even flown before. We’re used to running hills. We’re looking forward to the flatness of the beach. However, they’ve never run on sand. This is the first time in our school’s history, to my knowledge, to leave the state for a meet like this. Different terrain, different culture – everything. It’s a great opportunity for our students.”
“I think it will be a great learning experience for us who have never run on that type of terrain before,” Maxwell Laudermilch added, Mifflin County cross country runner.
The beauty of community partnership has had the opportunity to shine during the planning of this event as local entities and community and district leaders have assisted in ensuring the Pennsylvania team receives a true hospitable Texas welcome.
“Visit Galveston is excited to be working with GISD to host the 2022 Galveston Beach Run, one of the largest cross-country meets in Texas, along the beautiful shores of East Beach Park,” Bryan Kunz said, Director of Groups Sales with Visit Galveston. “We are thrilled to welcome thousands of participants and spectators from across the state and country. Their participation was made possible by a generous donation of sleeping rooms from our fantastic partners at the Best Western Plus Galveston Suites. Community partnerships like these are what make Galveston Island a premier destination for events of all types.”
Local restaurants such as Mario’s Seawall Italian & Pizzeria and Yaga’s Café are also showing community and district support by providing dinners for the visiting team.
GISD’s recently-hired Executive Director of Athletics Bob Jones will have the honor of firing the starting pistol to begin the meet.
“When I got to Galveston, I saw this event as being one of the premier cross country events in the country,” Jones said. “When you can bring 50-plus high schools from the state of Texas and some from outside of the island and have them compete on beautiful Galveston Island - who wouldn’t want to come here?”
The local community is invited to cheer on the athletes as the event is open to the public. Food and refreshments will be available for purchase, and activities will be available for children. Tickets are not required.
Galveston ISD is a public school district in Galveston, Texas that serves nearly 7,000 students. The district’s mission is to educate, engage and empower each student for a life of excellence. To learn more, visit www.gisd.org.
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